Chris Brown seems to have two modes when it comes to interacting with women: seducing them with his rich voice and smooth dance jams, and the one where he assaults them, attacks them, and points a gun in their faces. Having (allegedly) had a busy day or two doing the latter—cementing himself yet again as R&B’s most frequently condemned Mr. Hyde—Brown reverted to his Dr. Je-cool persona last night, releasing a new song via Soundcloud to celebrate posting his $250,000 bail.
And while you might expect a song from a just-released arrestee—titled “WHAT WOULD YOU DO?,” to boot—to be a fiery screed about his ordeal, in practice, it’s…pretty much a Chris Brown song. (There are some lyrics in there about “fighting for your life” and being “in too deep,” but they’re right in there with crooning about how “You got that look up in your eye,” so it’s kind of hard to take them seriously.) Divorced from context—a bitter split that’s left Brown with custody of a fanbase that’s now convinced he can do no wrong—it’s actually pretty danceable, if a little repetitive. It’s also possible that Brown is no longer capable of expressing himself through any medium but soaring vocals and thumping bass (and intermittent violence), and “WHAT WOULD YOU DO?” is actually a blistering manifesto of his burning inner rage and we just can’t hear it.